A new service pack for SAP's flagship BusinessObjects BI platform is reportedly taking an exceedingly long time to install on Windows machines, according to angry users posting gripes on an independent message board.

"I had to cancel the installation on our DEV box after 18 hours," user 'RGeurts' wrote last week about the pack, which is for BusinessObjects XI 3.1. "Does anyone know if BO will release a more stable release of SP2. Because an 18-hour installation of a service pack seems to be totally unacceptable for me. We simply cannot have the DEV box down for that long."

Another poster called the pack "a joke," expressing shock and bewilderment at its sluggish install process.

"Kicked it off at 9:00 this morning with no anti-virus running and ran it in quiet mode on a server doing nothing," 'clarej' wrote. "Seven hours later and it's just finished gathering information. What information is it gathering in that time? The complete history of the universe and everything in it maybe?"

Like RGeurts, clarej cited job difficulties caused by the slowly installing pack.

"I have an upgrade to do of our Prod servers from [platform version] XI2 and there are three servers. Taking into account that I have to install XI3.1 three times, configure it and then upgrade to SP2 and possibly FP1.8 there ain't gonna be enough time over a weekend."

Another user had better luck after experimenting with different system configurations.

"I have been testing with Win2003 and got 7-18 hours installations, based on the number of language packs," user 'bobano' wrote. "I installed a win2008 server, with identical system properties, and the SP2 installed in less then 4 hours (with one language)! Does win2008 have a different version of the Windows installer?"

In a statement, an SAP official acknowledged, "the install for Windows is very time-intensive."

"We were aware of this issue, which does not exist on the Linux and Unix platform versions, but decided to go ahead and release it to make the benefits of the latest Service Pack immediately available to Windows platform customers as well," said Franz Aman, vice president of intelligence platform product marketing. "The issue is documented in the release notes."

The problem is connected with a Windows install routine, according to Aman. "To avoid this in the future, we have an alternative approach that we will deploy in the next Service Pack release, SP3. Customers have the option of installing SP2 now if they have a compelling reason to do so, or they can move to SP3 when that becomes available."